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Space to Think, a new book celebrating ten years of the Dublin Review of Books More Information 

    Attentive Living

    Amanda Bell
    To pay attention to one thing is to resist paying attention to other things; it means constantly denying and thwarting provocations outside the sphere of one’s attention in order to be able to concentrate on what is essential.
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    A coming of age

    John Dillon
    The diary of the woman who was to become the wife of the prominent Irish Party politician John Dillon provides an intriguing insight into the social circles of substantial Catholic families in London and Ireland and the political alliances, and splits, in the nationalist movement.
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    Pulling back the curtains

    Emer Nolan
    Pulling back the curtains
    The heroines of the Victorian novel encountered a blockage in their lives that Sally Rooney’s do not. Might access to education have made a difference? What if Cathy and Heathcliff could have taken a module on Freud together, if Dorothea Brooke had been able to do a degree in medicine?
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    Born to provoke

    Conor Linnie
    Born to provoke
    Lucian Freud delighted in shocking his acquaintances with a series of stunts straight from the surrealist handbook. Dead and mounted animals littered his squat in a decaying Regency terrace house. Kenneth Clark’s wife was understandably appalled to find two dead monkeys in the oven.
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    Beating the odds

    Patricia Craig
    Beating the odds
    Edna O’Brien has been accused by some less perceptive critics of always writing about victims. But as she has insisted, and as is abundantly clear in her compelling new novel, she writes particularly of victims who survive, who pull through. She is celebrating resilience.
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    The Cream Separatist Movement

    Luke Gibbons
    Is the country destined to always lag behind the city? Sinn Féin, a creation of the urban bourgeois intelligentsia, took off as a national movement when it spread to rural Ireland, meshing with the vigorous co-operative movement, the countryside radicalising the city.
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    Ireland’s Imperial Elites

    Seán William Gannon
    Among Irish officers in the British army and colonial civil servants, ‘Irish’, ‘Anglo-Irish’, ‘English’ and ‘British imperial’ were seldom understood as mutually exclusive identities. That one could be simultaneously of Ireland, Britain, and empire was for most a self-evident article of faith.
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    History from the top II

    Barra Ó Seaghdha
    Amid the consensus about Ireland being a victim of politicians, bankers and out-of-control developers, is it right to forget the additional uncomfortable fact that large numbers of ordinary Irish people had been ripping off their fellow-citizens with ardour during the Celtic Tiger years?
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    People Power

    John Swift
    Does political democracy have a value in the absence of economic democracy? Should social distinctions be maintained? Ancient Athens largely practised a mixed system, with a modus vivendi between the classes that posed little threat to wealth and kept most public offices for the elite.
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    Speaking to the nation

    Maurice Walsh
    In their closeness to the church, practical timidity and occasional cautious defiance of authority, Ireland’s provincial papers in the early 20th century were exemplars of that elusive quantity ‘moderate opinion’. Yet by 1918 most had moved in the direction of Sinn Féin.
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